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Police in New Orleans - Essay Example

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According to President Bush the failure of the police to maintain law and order in the state of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina was due to the deep, persistent poverty in the region. The corrupt practices of the police department were also linked with the poverty of the state…
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Police in New Orleans
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Download file to see previous pages In 2002 and 2003, the state reported highest number of homicide cases. The law enforcement agencies are criticized for their failure to protect and safeguard the lives and properties of the citizens. Poverty is considered to be the major reason behind the involvement of the police into corrupt practices, the official poverty rate of the state is 28%, more than 25% of the residents of New Orleans, which include large number of police officials, earn less than $20,000.
The Katrina episode brought the inefficiency and incompetence of the police officials evident, in the Times Picayune edition it was reported that, "Neighbors in the area near Hickory and Short Streets Uptown said a body has been floating nearby in five feet of water since the unidentified man was shot five times on Monday. Neighbors said the shooting was reported, but police and other officials apparently have been unable to respond" (Nicole Gelinas, 2005).
The New Orleans police was previously considered to competent force, in mid 1990s the former commissioner Richard Pennington struggled hard and was successful in reducing the crime rate. However, since Pennington's departure, the crime rates have risen significantly. The New Orleans police department is considered as corrupt, brutal and an incompetent institution and the Katrina episode turned the situation worst.
The police have been involved in differe...
The investigations concluded that more than 12 officers were involved in the alleged practices of their involvement in looting. More than 250 police officers i.e. 15 percent of the police force faced disciplinary motions against them for their unreported absence during and post Katrina disaster (Associated Press).
The police department was reportedly accused of violence and brutality, and the senior police officials personally involved themselves for the clarity and investigation of the allegations. In one of the cases, an officer's wife lodged complain for being physical tortured by three police officers, who penetrated into her house without any warrant. The police authority launched the investigation instantly, and three officers were suspended with immediate notification. According to Police Supt. Warren Riley, 'We take our integrity very, very seriously'(Hampton, 2005). There were certain other accusations, in many of the crimes the police officials were caught red-handed. In one of the cases the police officials interrogated 12 officials for looting a market. The accused were traced through the installed security camera. The senior police officials were frank enough to confirm the allegations, and promised 'swift and decisive' actions against the accused, the senior officials reported that, 'There is zero tolerance for misconduct or unprofessional attitude by any member of this department'. (Hampton, 2005)
The police authorities did take considerable remedial measures to combat the allegations of corruptions. The police department revised their infrastructure, and the federal government provided the required resources for the up gradation of the services. The police department adopted ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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